Defensive Lineman Dexter Lawrence
Q: You guys have had veterans and former players come in and talk to you a couple of times throughout camp. Is it a little a different when Eli is there though?
A: Oh yeah, I played with him for one year. I always call him the GOAT. I mess around with him and all this stuff, but you know, it's good to see his face. It's been a while since he could actually come around and talk because of COVID and stuff, but it's good to hear the message from him today.
Q: And what was that message?
A: Just come out and trust in the process. Being a good teammate and being a good person to people you're around every day, competing. You know, if you're not getting better, you're getting worse type of thing. Just having that mental thing going through camp is good.
Q: In the 1-on-1 individual drills, it seemed like you were having fun using the power move. It seems like you were shoving guys really back.
A: Yeah, that's what I do (laughs).
Q: But I mean, are you coming in this year with any different approach with this defense or is it what you always did?
A: I think I'm just getting more knowledgeable about my position, understanding how to manipulate things and how to win more type of thing. That's what I've got to do as a defensive lineman is just learn the position and grow from there.
Q: How different is that position?
A: A D-lineman? I've been a D-lineman.
Q: You're a little more (inaudible)…
A: You know, it's just quicker. Everything's quicker right there. It's still the same thing as using my hands, bringing my feet, playing long, things like that.
Q: You've been used, I guess, kind of sporadically as a pass rusher. We're talking about third-and-long, pass rushing situations and things like that. How much – if at all – do you expect (Defensive Coordinator) Wink (Martindale) to use you more in those situations?
A: I don't really know how to answer that. Out here, the offense passes 90 percent of the practice, so you know, it's pass rush all the time pretty much. But honestly, we've got different personnels and things like that that I'm a part of. It's not like a number or anything I can say.
Q: Do you think at least though with Wink, he obviously prioritizes getting after the quarterback. For you personally, will that mean more opportunities to rush in general?
A: Yeah. The NFL is a passing league, so it's going to be a lot of pass rush on different first and second downs and probably more on third downs sometimes. So, it's just going out there every play.
Q: But do you feel that your usage is any different than what it was under (Former Defensive Coordinator) Pat Graham? Are the same responsibilities?
A: At the end of the day, it's football. I don't think my usage is different. I'm a force in the middle, and I'm going to keep being that.
Q: You've been around for a little bit now. Can you speak to the new regime beginning with (Head Coach Brian) Daboll? You guys all have personal goals. You want to get to the playoffs, which hasn't happened. Is it much more of a…
A: Yet – it hasn't happened yet.
Q: Is it much more about looking ahead and not looking at the things that haven't happened for you guys?
A: That's the yearly goal. Everybody's goal in the NFL is to win the Super Bowl. You've got to work towards that now to be able to accomplish that in the postseason and get to the postseason. No matter what coaching staff it is or which players, if everybody has the same goal, you're going to fight for that.
Q: Based on what you've seen so far from the offensive line in practice, what have been your impressions?
A: You know, it's good competition honestly. We're competing everyday – fighting with each other every day. I love the grittiness of the offensive line. We're still homeboys. We are going to fight and all that stuff, but that's just part of being upfront. It's just great competition.
Q: What did you do to set off (Guard) Shane (Lemieux)?
A: I didn't start it, I finished it (laughs). I guess somehow, he ended up on the ground, and he thought it was me. That's how it happened. Got the wrap in, and that's how it happened.
Q: Afterwards you guys…
A: Yeah, we just squashed it. We have lockers right next to each other, so it was nothing.
Q: When he asked you about the playoffs, you then jumped in and said, 'Yet.' Why?
A: Because that's the goal. You can't sit on what happened years prior. You've got to go for what you're shooting for now. Everybody's goal is to make it to the postseason. If everybody has the same goal, we're all going to have the same work ethic to try to get there.
Q: Is that a realistic goal for this year's team?
A: It is a realistic goal. It's everybody's goal.